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Overview

Home education is an approach to educating a student in Grades 1 to 12 at home or elsewhere in which the parent is responsible for making key education decisions. Home education programs must be supervised by one of the following groups:

  • a public, separate, or francophone school board
  • an accredited funded private school

Parents can choose curriculum resources and methodology consistent with the family’s beliefs. If a parent designs a program that does not follow the Alberta curriculum, the parent must declare, and the supervising school authority must confirm, that the program is consistent with the Home Education Regulation.

A publicly elected school board has the responsibility to serve all students whose parents reside within the board's boundaries, including those students whose parents choose home education. School authorities may also choose to offer a shared responsibility program.

Getting started

A parent may start a home education program at any time but should consider looking for a supervising school authority in the spring before the next school year. This timing helps parents explore their options and make a decision that best supports the needs of the student.

Parents looking to start or refine a home education program should refer to the Home Education Handbook.

The handbook includes information on:

  • planning the child’s education program
  • understanding legal rights and responsibilities
  • following through with a home education plan
  • planning supports and services
  • ending a home education program
  • planning for transitions

Each section of the handbook emphasizes the importance of effective communication, ongoing co‑operation and partnership between the parent(s) and the supervising school authority.

Government is revising the Home Education Handbook and will post the updated handbook online when it is available.

Parental responsibilities

Parents have the responsibility to notify their supervising school authority of their intent to home educate their child each year.

Parents choosing home education have the primary responsibility for planning, managing, providing, evaluating and supervising their children’s courses of study. They must develop a home education program that enables the student to achieve appropriate learning outcomes, and submit this program plan to the supervising school authority.

If the plan is accepted, the supervising school authority must conduct 2 evaluations of student progress during the school year. Certificated teachers must conduct these evaluations.

School authority responsibilities

The supervising school authority that accepts the parents’ home education program is called the associate board or associate private school.

If a parent requests it, the associate board or associate private school must provide assistance and advice to improve student learning.

The associate board or associate private school must also arrange for certificated teachers employed by the associate board or associate private school to conduct at least 2 formal evaluations of each student each school year.

These evaluations include:

  • a review of the student portfolio
  • recommendations to help students make improvements

Together with the parents, the associate school board or associate private school must ensure that each student meets the parents’ educational outcomes in accordance with the Home Education Regulation.

Shared Responsibility Program

A parent and an Alberta funded school authority may agree to share responsibility for the student’s education. The following conditions must be met for this to occur:

  • An Alberta certificated teacher, employed by a school authority, performs the following duties while delivering selected courses that follow the Alberta programs of study:
    • planning
    • selecting resources
    • assessment
    • evaluating student progress
  • A parent creates a program under the authority of the Education Act and the Home Education Regulation. The parent is responsible for developing, administering and managing the home education program as outlined in parental responsibilities above.

In a Shared Responsibility Program, The school authority is responsible for a minimum of:

  • 50% of the student’s program in Grades 1 to 9
  • 20% of the student’s program in Grades 10 to 12

School boards and accredited funded private schools are not required to offer shared responsibility programs.

Resources

Contact

To connect with Alberta Education's Field Services branches:

Phone: 780-427-6272
Toll free: 310-0000 before the phone number (in Alberta)